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SUMMARY OF COMMENTS AT 9/20/06 PUBLIC MEETING ON OAKLAND ZERO WASTE STRATEGIC PLAN

MAJOR COMMENTS ON SELECTED STRATEGIES AND MAJOR FOCUS AREAS Public Comments Whos Missing? Partners are already doing things in these areas. Dont reinvent the wheel. Want simpler version to take to community groups. Need to build political constituency for this. We dont want a document that the public and businesses havent been a part of developing. You need to go beyond the leaders of the movement represented in this meeting. Education is number 1 priority. Whats Missing? Draft is way too weak on transition of where we are to where wed like to go. Discuss what were doing now and steps to get from here to there. Need to identify what the real issues are. What can individual residents do to help move Oakland towards Zero Waste? Look at how to create businesses to make money from our discarded resources. Add landscaping standards as well as Green Building standards. Need to better address all the materials recovered from construction and demolition activities in the discussion of Green Buildings. Zero waste at events. Links to greenhouse gas emissions and savings. Upstream links to waste. That feeds into EPR. Want something to guide action, prioritize, and mobilize people. Goal in Council Resolution from March 2006 was What is Zero Waste and Why do it. Should we include that same information again in the Zero Waste Strategic Plan? Other Comments Missing a Preamble and sizzle. Zero Waste is on the cutting edge. You need to tie back to other core values for those not aware of the benefits of Zero Waste, including Health, Jobs, Environmental Quality, Public Safety, Quality of Life, and National Security issues. Dont be too abstract. The strategies that were proposed are more like tactics. The Strategic Plan is not intended to be a comprehensive program plan. The intent is to map out general strategies and a framework for initiatives to come forward. Need to address in the Strategic Plan what are the priorities for the near term, medium term, long term, within the City and outside the City structure. How to present and organize the information and strategies is challenging. Layers are suggested: Executive Summary, then Details (priorities and resources needed to implement), then attachments with references and data. We should be explicit first in the strategies selected, then summarize those back into a simple

document. Strategic Plan purpose is to provide guidance in planning and decision-making. Its not intended to go beyond that. Should it be more concrete or more abstract? This is something in between. It provides an overarching framework with very specific details. In the Plan, need to include a compelling statement about what Zero Waste is and what Zero Waste will get us. In the Strategic Plan we are trying to address systemic and economic barriers to material recovery. Need to rebrand Sustainability and Zero Waste. Identify messages and how to send them. There are lots of definitions of Green and Sustainability. Need an inspiring message immediately, developed throughout the metropolitan area. Once the message is developed, need to go out to the public with a shorter version of the Zero Waste Plan. Have you put together a plan to communicate this Strategic Plan? Need to communicate better before AND after the Strategic Plan is adopted. On communications issue, we take for granted why Zero Waste is important. Messaging is important. Communications is also a 2-way street. The City needs to listen to what is happening with business, what their concerns are, and why they dont recycle more, to better craft a strategy. Council asked how we would approach Zero Waste. This is it. But need to communicate, communicate, communicate better. Eye on the Bay recently had a show on Reuse and Recycling. Need more shows like that, to make it entertaining and educational to learn more about Zero Waste. Not sure that direct mail is a sustainable approach. Need to keep message and tools simple, and focus on story telling. Get High School kids thinking of how to reuse and recycle more. City never tried to help existing paper packers who pick up corrugated cardboard and other independent recyclers. If the City said to business generators to call phone numbers of paper packers, there would be more recycling going on. Oaklands private free, open competitive marketplace is very progressive. Although some criticize the City for not supporting independent recyclers, the Technical Assistance Program gets positive feedback on the contributions of independent recyclers. Bans will take a lot of political thinking and talking. Need to highlight alternatives. If we ban a material, how do we know theres not a problem with replacement products and unintended consequences of changes? Styrofoam Ban - was beginning of going upstream and very concrete. Once that is implemented successfully, Council will get it and the next product will be easier to ban. Apply more resources to bring together Green Businesses on Zero Waste issues and tie back to Planning Department goal to find industrial land. Use private sector more. Help existing service providers. Theyll find new ways to help achieve Zero Waste. For it to be more attractive to be a Green Business, the City or others need to help Green Businesses find each others products and services. Although the Sustainable Business Alliance helps Green Businesses find each other, it doesnt help identify products and services. Can claim landfills are clogging and wars are being fought over energy and resources; also exporting jobs by sending underprocessed materials overseas. Leads to promoting industrial

base as a key part of healthy, sustainable communities. CalMax is not timely and not known by the public. Oakland could help support a local materials exchange. What is meant by Waste Management System Redesign? Other cities restructured contracts from cost plus to incentives for diversion in paying haulers and rates that reward generators that increase waste diversion. If you do it right, the system becomes self-funding, with different penalties and rewards. Most effective when you hit them in the pocketbook. Need to prepare for new solid waste and recycling collection, disposal and processing contract (s) to be redesigned to help achieve Zero Waste. In air pollution, regulators shifted from regulations that resulted in 300 foot tall smokestacks to incentives to reduce emissions. In water pollution, regulators shifted from longer and longer pipes into the ocean to more wastewater treatment plants and pre-treatment standards. In waste management, if waste are mixed, they are garbage, but if they are sorted, they are resources. Davis Street Transfer Station in San Leandro is the largest transfer station that Waste Management owns in the whole country. Unfortunately, there not as much diversion there as desired. Smaller transfer stations have higher rates of diversion (e.g., Healdsburg and Morgan Hill). We need to identify priorities and immediate actions to take. Redesigning the Waste Management System is a multi-year process. The Urban Environmental Accords focus on key issues and benchmark them and measure progress. We could use the framework of the Urban Environmental Accords to highlight priority issues each year. For example, Green Building in 2007, another key issue in 2008, another one in 2009, etc. Do better with what were doing now, in the residential and commercial sectors. Prioritize whats needed to do that and identifying funding needed. Need a distinction between adopting policy and passing municipal ordinances. Agree its important to get buy-in at every step of the way. The question is, when do we codify it? Its a relief to think this more of a policy, than the details. A big question is whether to use State waste diversion numbers vs. disposal numbers (tons to landfill). There is a lot of data available, particularly from StopWaste.org. Applaud Citys draft that includes a different measurement approach. That is an important step to clear the fog. Whos doing research? What is the baseline of data on what Oakland is generating as waste? [Response: staff has been researching that data and it will be included in the draft Strategic Plan or referred to where the data is easily available.] How can I contribute from here out, until Administrative regulations are adopted? When you talk EPR and ADF, eyes glaze over.